Southern California UFCW locals are in negotiations over a new contract for MedMen workers. The contract we negotiated in 2018 expired on February 28. The union and the company have agreed to extend your existing contract through April 30, so members receive the time-and-a half premium on 4/20, while we continue negotiations.
Your union negotiating committee has now met with MedMen negotiators six times since the start of February. We have made important progress on some priorities, but there are no guarantees until we have a ratified, signed contract. As things now stand, their economic proposals are a hodgepodge of outright takeaways.
Take their wage proposal, for example. Their offer would do away with the three-year progression to the top rate for new hires, replacing it with a “starting rate,” to take effect in 2022, which is a quarter above the current bottom rate ($17/hour). This would eliminate increases on your anniversary date and replace them with a solitary 2.5% annual increase starting in January 2022. Terrible, and not acceptable.
The company has not agreed to permit members to accept gratuities and gifts. They have resisted every union proposal to address the concerns some members have made about harassment at work. They have proposed to eliminate the payout for unused sick days and eliminate the time-and-a-half premium on all holidays. After members risked their safety and health to serve patients and customers throughout a global pandemic, their stonewalling, and claw back bargaining demands, are both insulting and immoral.
We are scheduled to meet with the company three times during April – on the 8th, 15th and 22nd. We anticipate responses from the company on tips and health insurance during our next meeting.
We are not done. The strength of our solidarity and unity will decide what type of contract we win. You are the union, and your participation matters. A lot.
For information on how to join our campaign to win a good contract, contact Reggie Edwards at firstname.lastname@example.org or 213-218-5477. You may also reach out to us through your MedMen location’s union negotiating committee representative.